Trying to encourage our son to try to cycle without his stabilisers turned out to be quite a challenge. In our efforts to persuade him to at least give it a go, we focussed very much on the positives of the freedom he would experience. Whilst these went a long way to encouraging him, I suspect it all felt a little distant or unreachable for him. However, there was one motivation that worked brilliantly – the promise of ice-cream!
This simple but immediate promise was something he could understand and trust to be real enough for him to try. With the promise of ice-cream in his mind, he did a few turns of the pedals without any help and a huge smile spread across his face as I caught him. “I did it!” was his cry.
Each day Kyle would practise more and more, and within a few days he was well and truly off on his bike and loving every minute of it! One day, as we were cycling together, I asked him, “Kyle. Why can you ride your bike now?” His response was actually one that is quite insightful, “I did it because I kept trying and trying, even though I felt scared. When I got scared, I just kept pedalling.”
It was this simple statement that spoke to me. In all honesty, when we look at moving forward in our lives, do we live by this simple statement? Do we keep trying and trying, even though we feel scared? And, when we do get scared, do we keep going, or do we stop in our tracks? Sometimes I think the simple solution is to stop focussing on the fears and live for the promise of good things that God has for us. As this scripture reminds us, His Covenant is totally and utterly trustworthy. The Bible is full of promises of good things for us; some of which may be more immediate than others.
As Kyle has now discovered, life without stabilisers on his bike is a very happy life indeed. That once unreachable goal has now been reached and only now can he totally understand the freedom that we promised him. For us, we must recognise that God’s promise of freedom is one that is there for all of us, even if we see it as unreachable. Yet I do believe that God is also kind enough to encourage us through more immediate gifts, so that we can walk step by step into freedom, discovering more and more of His promises as we go.
Prayer: Father God, I know Your promises are good and true. Yet I struggle to believe I can enter into the fullness of them. Please encourage me with good things to help me stay focussed on You. Amen.
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